Hiding Behind “SOME”
This past week I managed to listen to a critique on the overuse of the phrase “Some People” in a monologue by Greg Gutfeld. In fact, I think this term received criticism from Mr. Gutfeld more than once over the past week or two. Justly I might add. For I too am sometimes guilty of hiding behind the word. Oops I did it again. (With apologies to Ms. Spears.)
Seldom do I watch television on my own unless I am in the hand quilting stage of a project. However, some of the time I will have the TV turned on for background noise. This past week I was stripping wallpaper in the kitchen and so this became one of the times the television was on.
I believe the point of Mr. Gutfeld’s commentary was to highlight how journalists and others are hiding behind the phrase some or some people. The monologue made me stop and think. How often have I used some on Econogal? And why?
After starting the previous paragraph, I Googled some and came up with this:
an unspecified amount or number of.
“I made some money running errands”
used to refer to someone or something that is unknown or unspecified.
“I was talking to some journalist the other day”
(used with a number) approximately.
“some thirty different languages are spoken”
a considerable amount or number of.
“he went to some trouble”
at least a small amount or number of.
“he liked some music but generally wasn’t musical”
expressing admiration of something notable.
“that was some goal”
o used ironically to express disapproval or disbelief.
“Mr. Power gave his stock reply. Some help”
an unspecified number or amount of people or things.
“here are some of our suggestions”
at least a small amount or number of people or things.
“surely some have noticed”
to some extent; somewhat.
“when you get to the majors, the rules change some”
and then some
and plenty more than that.”we got our money’s worth and then some”
a considerable amount of.”we are going to be working
I found the second example under the use of determiner quite interesting. But maybe Artificial Intelligence is not involved and it truly is a coincidence. I also checked with Merriam-Webster and you can compare the definitions by clicking here.
The fifth definition under determiner; at least a small amount or number of and the second, correlating pronoun definition; at least a small amount or number of people or things represent how I most often use the word. My belief is that it keeps me honest. As in SOME readers may like the book. Am I hiding behind this phrase? Quite possibly.
Staying away from words that generalize is as important as not making generalizations. The problem with broad statements are the myriad of exceptions. Very few things are concrete. In fact, outside of the hard sciences, the only inevitable is death. (I am not excluding a life in the hereafter. Just excluding immortality on Earth.)
I grew up trusting journalists both print and broadcast. But now I consider most individuals in the field commentators not journalists. My belief is the 24/7 news cycle created this skew away from journalism. There is just too much time to fill.
Also, it is my belief that “Fake News” is not new. My older readers may recall the time a major network showed an exploding American made car on television. After the airing, the information came to light that the vehicle had an incendiary device attached to ensure an explosion.
So, how should one proceed?
Stop hiding behind words like “some” is a first step. Then, get the facts. Next, don’t jump to conclusions. Finally, remember the Internet does not equal truth. Nor, in this day of self-publication does the printed word.
So, for my part, I plan to limit my use of determiners. Furthermore, I will do a better job of sharing my sources. Even though this website is an opinion based blog, I will strive for accuracy. This includes letting readers know both website and print material sources. Happy reading!